Our repertoire of lunch haunts in the city centre is quite limited. As a group of three, sometimes two, very occasionally four colleagues, we tend to make our way between the same five or six venues, and it’s rare to add a new one.
The work canteen has long since been abandoned. In the days when Pamela was in charge, it used to be the default choice and we’d all stare at the menu, and once in a while one person would use their veto and suggest “Elsewhere?”
But in the last few years, we’ve stopped even examining the menu and head out for the walk in all but the worst weather.
So it was with interest that I read somewhere that the Black Box Café had started to do pizzas. (The last decent pizza place - the Azura in Church Lane - sadly closed a year or two back, leaving the Pizza Hut Express in Castle Court the only option now.)
I should have read more carefully. Pizzas are only available at evening events and not during the day. But we stayed anyway and the soup looked good across the table. My toastie was disappointing. The brown bread was toasted, but the contents in-between the slices were still at fridge temperature. Someone in the Black Box needs to buy a sandwich toaster ... and extend Pizzas to lunchtime for the cold and wet autumn/winter period!
The art on the wall was good though. Moochin Photoman’s Old Meets New exhibition of TtV (Through the Viewfinder) photos. It’s Ireland’s first TtV exhibition and the blurb explains the combination of ...
“... analogue and digital technologies with stunning results. Harnessing over 15 years experience as a commercial and community photographer, and a background in film, John has used the viewfinder of a 1940’s Ensign Ful-Vue with a digital camera to produce a visually rich - and sometimes gritty body of work which spans portraiture, documentary, and more conceptual pieces.
Sponsored by Snappy Snaps, High Street, Belfast”
Like all photo collections from in and around Belfast, there’s the obligatory shot of the Belfast Eye ... except John managed to make his dark and dramatic. Particularly intriguing was the 104-snap montage that’s on sale for £250.
Call in and have a look - exhibition closes on 16 September. Just don’t promise a colleague there’ll be pizza on the menu!